Orkney Island Private Adventure

Hadas

Sunday 30th June – Saturday 6th July 2024

Number of Travellers: 4
Duration: 7 Days / 6 Nights

Overview

On this private itinerary, travel to the unforgettable Orkney Islands, a little-visited archipelago of some 70 small islands, located due north of the Scottish mainland. Hiking is a wonderful way to explore these islands, as it allows you to enjoy the beautiful scenery as you discover the rich history of the islands. This mysterious land of long summer days and colorful night skies is home to a wealth of marine life and sea birds, as well as remarkable flora such as the rare Primula Scotica. The history and culture of the islands is particularly fascinating – covering time spans from Neolithic villages and chambered tombs, through to Viking invasions and the lasting impact of WWI and WWII. Traveling with a private guide, you’ll gain local insights to the history and modern-day life on these beautiful islands.

Highlights

  • Discover the striking coastline of the Orkney Islands as you enjoy wild hikes, each providing insights to the rich history of these islands
  • Experience the rich natural and cultural heritage of the Orkneys in the company of an expert local guide.
  • Relax in comfort at a renowned small hotel, enjoying the Orcadian hospitality and the best of local produce

Day by Day

Day 1 - Sunday 30th June - Inverness

Arriving in Inverness by air or train, make your way to the comfortable hotel, situated close to the city center. The hotel has spa facilities and various dining options.

Overnight: Inverness | Ness Walk Hotel
Meals Included: None

Day 2 - Monday 1st July - To Orkney

Your private guide collects you from the hotel this morning. The journey to the Orkney Islands follows the north-east coast of the Highlands and onwards over the Pentland Firth. We reach Orkney in the late afternoon, where we’ll visit the Italian Chapel, two Nissan huts converted into a place of worship by prisoners of war. We’ll then continue on to our hotel which is situated nearby to the major archeological sites which add to the intrigue to these islands. This evening, enjoy dinner with your guide to discuss the days ahead and what you’d like to get out of it.

Overnight: Kirkwall | Ayre Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

Day 3 - Tuesday 2nd July - Coastal Hike and Skara Brae

We start the day with a hike above the sea cliffs at Yesnaby. The cliffs, pounded by the relentless swell, are sculpted into an array of spectacular coves and sea stacks. This storm-lashed coastline is also one of the strongholds of the tiny Primula Scotica. Afterwards, we visit the Stone Age village of Skara Brae, discovered in 1850 after a storm cleared away the sand dunes that were covering it. If you’re feeling thirsty, we can end the day with a trip to the local micro-brewery; or perhaps stock up on some local snacks such as tablet and fatty cutties, bought from the ‘Little Yellow Hut’ honesty box nearby.

Overnight: Kirkwall | Ayre Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
Walk Details: 6 km / 4 miles

Day 4 - Wednesday 3rd July - Orkney's Neolithic Heart

We spend the morning exploring some of Orkney’s key historic sites – the Ring of Brodgar, the Stones of Stenness and Maes Howe. After lunch in the village of Stromness, we hike along a coastal path to a headland known as The Ness, and onwards to the Sand of Warebeth. On the return to Kirkwall, if you are interested in local ceramics, we can detour to the tiny village of Harray, where we can visit the magically-named Harray Potter. Alternatively, take a tour around the local whisky distillery. Back in Kirkwall, head out to the local inns for dinner and to find some traditional folk music.

Overnight: Kirkwall | Ayre Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
Walk Details: 8 km / 5 miles

Day 5 - Thursday 4th July - The Old Man of Hoy

Leaving Kirkwall, we drive along the edge of Scapa Flow, where a fleet of German ships was scuttled in WWI – some of these are still visible today. We catch a local ferry over to the island of Hoy, which translates as ‘High’ from Norse language, reflecting its hilly landscape compared to the other islands. Our goal, of course, is to hike to the famous Old Man of Hoy – the highest sea stack in Britain. However, the whole hike is a joy, passing beautiful Rackwick Bay and crossing high moorlands before we reach the towering cliff edges on the west coast, and carefully peer down at the 449 foot high sea stack.

Overnight: Kirkwall | Ayre Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch
Walk Details: 10 km / 6 miles

Day 6 - Friday 5th July - Return to Inverness

We leave Orkney on a morning ferry to begin the journey south to Inverness. However, the route south takes us along part of Scotland’s ‘North Coast 500’ route, so is to be savored. An unusual and enlightening stop is at the Whaligoe Steps, a series of 365 stone steps sculpted into the cliff face, leading down to a tiny harbor. In the 1800s, the women would meet the fishing boats to carry baskets of fish up these steep steps to be sold in a local market. Arriving back at Inverness late afternoon, check into the hotel and say farewell to your guide, before enjoying a free evening in the city.

Overnight: Inverness | Kingsmills Hotel
Meals Included: Breakfast and Lunch

Day 7 - Saturday 6th July - Depart

After breakfast, depart at your leisure. The hotel staff will be happy to arrange a transfer to the airport or railway station. Alternatively, ask us about options to extend your stay in the Highlands.

Meals Included: Breakfast

Trip Details

Inclusions Read More
  • All accommodation from Day 1 to Day 7
  • Most meals as indicated above
  • Services of an experienced and knowledgeable UK qualified guide from Day 2 to Day 6
  • Ground transportation from Day 2 to Day 6
  • All guided hikes and activities mentioned in the itinerary
  • Various visits and excursions throughout the trip, specifically:
  • D2 – The Italian Chapel
  • D3 – Skara Brae
  • D4 – Maes Howe, Stones of Stenness, Ring of Brodgar, visit the Harray Potter
  • D5 – Day trip to Hoy including local ferry and local transfers on Hoy
  • Personalised trip design and delivery
  • Snacks throughout the trip
  • Map and trip dossier
  • 24 hour in-country support from the Wilderness Team
Exclusions Read More
  • Airport transfers on D1 or D1 (available on request)
  • Meals not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Day 3 – Microbrewery tour
  • Day 5 – Whisky distillery tour
  • Activities and entrance fees not mentioned in the inclusions
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuities for the main guide
Optional Upgrades Read More
  • Room upgrades in Inverness (2 nights) – available on request
  • Airport transfers – £100 per transfer
  • Whisky distillery tour (these can usually be booked locally)
Pricing Read More

 

This price includes a £12 per person conservation & community contribution* which can be opted out of if wished

*Your voluntary donation goes towards conservation & community projects in the locations we operate.  If you would like to opt out just let your trip designer know. Click here for more information.